Hello, and welcome to the first of the Beast from the East columns, covering Asian horror and monster movies. As a longtime fan of Asian horror (from giant monster films and period piece horror dramas and on to more modern fare), it is my pleasure to bring you reviews and insight into the world of ghosts, yokai, strange vampires, animal demons, Kaiju and all manner of urban and traditional folklore from the East.Read more
When larcenous real estate clerk Marion Crane goes on the lam with a wad of cash and hopes of starting a new life, she ends up at the notorious Bates Motel, where manager Norman Bates cares for his housebound mother. The place seems quirky, but fine… until Marion decides to take a shower.Read more
“Is this your wife? What a lovely throat…”
I’m always skeptical about recommending silent movies to casual viewers because I rarely enjoy them myself, even as a hardcore film buff. Frankly, I just haven’t the patience – for my taste, silent movies are just too old, too removed from our own world, too much like hard work. Unless you’re an aficionado, silent film requires the modern viewer to rewire their brain in the process of watching to make sense of what they’re seeing. The performances are usually so broad and theatrical to compensate for the lack of dialogue, and the absence of sound is often deafening.
With this in mind, watching F.W Murnau’s Nosferatu is like taking a long stage-coach ride to an remote land of ancient legend and lore. Almost a hundred years old, the copy I saw was scratched to buggery, and looked like it could have been shot in the year the film is set, 1838. Through Murnau’s iris lens I was transported to a world of light and shade, where one of cinema’s most memorable bogeymen scuttled in the shadows – Max Schreck’s Count Orlok.
Dr. Orlof, a former prison doctor, abducts beautiful women from nightclubs and tries to use their skin to repair his daughter’s fire-scarred face. He is assisted by Morpho, a deformed monstrosity who delights in biting his victims. Orlof had better hurry, though — a young police inspector and his ballerina girlfriend are onto his sadistic practices.Read more
I love this movie. It’s almost hard for me to give a balanced review of it. Thankfully I’m not a professional critic, I’m just a guy mouthing off on the net. So I can open a review by URGING people to rent this movie if they get a chance. They’ll thank me later.Read more
Harry and Valerie Spalding arrive in the remote Cornish village to an unwelcoming and suspicious population. Harry’s brother dies suddenly, bitten by a lethal reptilian bite. They befriend a young woman Anna whose tyrannical father controls her life and, as they discover that others in the village have suffered a similar fate, their investigations lead to Anna. What they uncover is a victim of the most terrifying legacy… a destiny of mutilation and murder.Read more
Little known fact about me – when I was a kid I ate up Japanese monster movies. Godzilla, Mothra, Ghidorah, were all well known in my household. And while by and large I have grown out of this, I still revisit my childhood obsession from time to time. Which brings me to an all-time favorite – Rodan!Read more